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Playing politics with the nation's economy
I would suspect that this time next week, the United States Congress will have raised the debt ceiling with some hybrid plan that reduces spending.
But the much larger question centers on whether this last-minute plan will actually address the spending problem that threatens this country.
Like countless others, I strongly suspect the answer is no.
Here's just but one example of how the game is played. The Democrats want to count as a spending cut the money that would have been used to fund the ongoing war efforts in the Mideast.
Now chew on that for a moment. Our spending crisis is caused by shelling out more money than we collect. Yet the Democrats - always eyeing the next election - want to proudly talk about cutting spending when they are really talking about not spending money allocated for the war effort.
That type of shell game is what infuriates the American public.
But rest assured, there's ample blame to pass around on the GOP side of the aisle as well.
The Republicans are so entrenched on the "no new tax" bandwagon that they have lost sight of the more important issue of jobs in this country. If more money flowing into the treasury can produce more non-government jobs, then they should modify their position.
But the GOP argues effectively that giving more taxes to a spend-crazed administration will do little to change the economy other than hamper the true job-producers.
All of these discussions are a lead-up to next year's elections. Even the most staunch Democrat must finally accept the reality that this economy belongs squarely with this administration. And given that predicament, there is no wonder they fight so furiously for more revenue to help cover the dismal track record of this administration.
Despite their rhetoric, this administration cares less about the middle class than they do the lower class. The middle class are the producers who toil to provide their tax dollars to help fund this government.
This administration talks about the plight of the most vulnerable without once addressing the causes that make this population vulnerable in the first place.
That discussion is the most critical issue facing our spending woes and everyone knows it. It's time we face the difference between the truly vulnerable and the vulnerable made that way by a government that benefits from maintaining that fine line of vulnerability.
A dependent population will always side with those who keep the checks flowing. A working population will always vote their pocketbook.
This week the administration signaled the true intentions of these discussions. The President apparently made it very clear that whatever deal is eventually struck, he wants the deal to take the nation past the upcoming elections.
At the end of the day, these discussions are more about politics than addressing a staggering economy.
I'm just not sure if we can live with higher gas prices, higher grocery prices and higher unemployment until November 2012.